The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 seeks to grant citizenship to non-Muslim minorities from neighbouring countries.
Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Christians from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh can acquire Indian citizenship as per the new law, which blocks naturalisation for Muslims.
Critics say the law – similar to US President Donald Trump’s Muslim ban – goes against the spirit of India’s secular constitution. Rights groups and a Muslim political party have challenged the law in Supreme Court.
In the northeastern parts of India, the protests are mainly against allowing any “foreign migrant” from Bangladesh – irrespective of religion – to settle in the region.
On December 15, more than 100 students were injured and dozens arrested after police stormed New Delhi’s Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), located 130km (81 miles) from the capital, to disperse the protests against the contentious law.
Since the attack, solidarity protests have also been held across the South Asian country.